Warner Bros. is building its own galaxy that is far, far away.
The studio has picked up the rights to Alien Legion, a star-spanning, sci-fi comic initially published by Marvel Comics, with the aim of building a homegrown space opera franchise.
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Tim Miller, who directed the original Deadpool as well as Terminator: Dark Fate, is attached to direct.
Don Murphy and Susan Montford of Angry Films, the banner whose credits include Transformers and Real Steel, will produce along with Aaron Ryder.
Legion was co-created by Carl Potts, a former editor and writer at Marvel, and was introduced as part of the publisher’s creator-owned imprint, Epic Comics, in 1983. It became the line’s longest-running title, even outliving the imprint when it was moved to other publishers in the 21st century. Alan Zelenetz and Frank Cirocco are the other co-creators.
Described as “the French Foreign Legion in space,” the stories focused on a intergalactic peace-keeping force that took in all manner of species without asking too many questions about their pasts or intentions, operating within an unwieldly government system known as the Galactic Union that is straining to be a democratic melting pot. Prejudice and bad intentions abound and struggle with well-intentioned idealists
Among the key characters are Sarigar, a captain from a serpent-like species that were once used as slave labor; the brutish degenerate Juger Grimrod, with his green skin and deep hostility towards authority; the gentle four-armed medic, Meico; and Torie Montroc, a human who is being forced to do a tour of duty in the Legion in order to receive his inheritance.
Hollywood has flirted with adapting the comics, with its Star Wars and Star Trek tones, for over two decades. Angry Films briefly it set up at Dimension Films in the early 2000s, although the genre arm of then mighty Miramax could never mount the budget necessary to translate something that amounts to an event film to the big-screen.
Mega-producer Jerry Bruckheimer set up the property at Disney later in the 2000s and had scripts written by David Benioff (Game of Thrones), and 3:10 to Yuma’s Derek Haas and Michael Brandt. Eventually the rights reverted to Potts, who continued to find the right home for his pulpy concept.
Warner Bros. Pictures Group co-chair and CEO Michael De Luca is a a fan of the title and had pursued it for several years. Miller, too, is a long time fan, with Legion being a comic he had pursued when he had been an animator earlier in his career.
Miller, who is currently prepping revenge flick Best Served Cold with Rebecca Ferguson as his next project, is repped by WME and Johnson Shapiro.
Murphy and Monford are developing a multi-medium take on classic sci-fi title Buck Rogers and are also making new version of cult horror movie Faces of Death.
Potts was repped on the deal by Blain and Associates.
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